Today marks the first anniversary of the death of Heath Ledger. The gifted Australian actor died in a New York City apartment on January 22, 2008 after an "accidental toxic combination of prescription drugs" at age 28. He is survived by his daughter Matilda Rose from his relationship with actress Michelle Williams.
Fittingly, and deservingly, Ledger was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his role as the Joker in the box-office smash The Dark Knight earlier today. He was previously nominated in the Best Actor category in 2005 for Brokeback Mountain. Ledger's win for Supporting Actor seems like a guarantee, having already captured the category at this year's Golden Globe Awards. "All of us who worked with Heath on The Dark Knight accept with an awful mixture of sadness but incredible pride. For any of us lucky enough to work with him, he will be eternally missed, but he will never be forgotten," Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan told the audience at the Golden Globes as he accepted the award on Ledger's behalf.
Ledger's final film appearance, in Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, is due out later this year. While Ledger's death came halfway through the film's production, Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law helped fill in for Ledger's role of "Tony." Additionally, Ledger's music video for Nick Drake's "Black Eyed Dog," which the actor also directed, will appear on an upcoming Drake tribute album. Join Rock Daily as we look back at Ledger's legacy:
• Heath Ledger (1979 - 2008)
• Heath Ledger's 2006 Rolling Stone Cover Story
• Shock at Sundance: Peter Travers Remembers Heath Ledger
• Peter Travers Video Review: A Look at Heath Ledger's Best Performances